The big day is next weekend, Saturday, July 27 from 1-4pm! For the volunteer organizers of “A Walk In Waynedale,” their hard work is about to be on display for the community, bringing a day of fun activities and a sense of togetherness to over 2,000 neighbors from throughout the Waynedale area.

As The Waynedale Community Picnic has done for so many years, the event promises to not disappoint and was designed to build on the Picnic’s previous successes. But make no mistake, this new event will be quite different than the humble style of the traditional Picnic, relocating the event to the middle of Bluffton Road and placing guests right in the heart of the community so they can see and discover more things in Waynedale.

On Saturday, July 27 from 1-4pm, Bluffton Road will be closed from Flagstar Bank to Star Bank. The street will showcase emergency vehicles, over 40 local vendors who will be hosting activities, a chalk walk and more. But that’s not all, the Adam Strack Band will be rocking out on the main stage. There will be a “Science Tent” between Hair Affair and Edward Jones’ parking lot which will encourage guests to bring out their inner sense of adventure and learn some things they might not know. In that area, there will also be food trucks, an eating/ sitting area, face painting and more.

But, how will you get there? If you’re able and nearby, the event is centrally located, so the A Walk In Waynedale committee encourages you to use the new sidewalks and trails and come by walking or biking there. And if you ride there, be sure to stop at the bike decorating station, and you definitely don’t want to miss participating in the bike parade, which starts at 3pm from Hair Affair.

If you can’t walk or bike to the event, there will be parking at The Southwest Conservation Club and in Star Bank’s commercial lot. And with help from shuttles from Kingston Residence, Englewood Health & Rehab and American Legion Post 241, there will be shuttles from St. Therese Catholic Church and Davita Dialysis Center (former BMV) throughout the event. However, no event parking will be allowed in the lots of businesses that surround the event, as they are reserved for patrons of their business only.

Don’t forget to grab your Map & Passport at one of the information booths upon arrival! For each stamp that you receive from participating in an activity or by visiting a vendor, the bigger the prize you qualify for and the better chance you have of winning.

The entire day is sponsored by over 100 local businesses, organizations and individuals who have donated their time or funding to a day of community togetherness for you, as a resident of the area, to enjoy. This event was organized by the time, resources and efforts of volunteers, Gary Brennan, Casey Mitchell, Carissa Mitchell, Anita Kowalski, Beulah Matczak, Megan Custer, Erin Floyd, Jeremy Gerardot, Megan Ryan, Alex Cornwell, and led by Camille Garrison.

If you are interested in helping as a volunteer or if you would like more information about “A Walk In Waynedale”, you can find more information about this event at Waynedale.com/WalkInWaynedale or by finding the event on Facebook.

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1:00pm – Doors Open
1:30pm – Live Band Starts
3:00pm – Bike Parade
Emergency Vehicle
Tours At Select Times

Face Painting
Chalk Walk & Drawing
Exploration Science Tent
Music & Live Band
Kids Games & Prizes
Vendor Meet & Greet
Bike Decorating
Food Trucks

*Many businesses will stay open although the road will be closed, be sure to visit them too!

Each year, the event organizers reach out to the businesses and organizations in the Waynedale area to help put on this free and fun community event! Each and every year, they respond positively and generously! This year, over 100 Waynedale businesses contributed to the A Walk In Waynedale Event. Please thank the sponsors by shopping or using their services as they’ve extended themselves to make sure you’ve had a great time at the event.

Over 40 different vendors from around Fort Wayne will be present the day of the festival to visit with all of the attendees! With all of these vendors in one location and at one single event, this is a great way to hear from many local businesses all at once, and to catch up on what’s new.

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A Walk In Waynedale, which is sure to become a rich tradition within our community, will be a day jam packed with fun for all ages! This family friendly event is, as always, full of some of our old favorites from The Waynedale Community Picnic, but this year we also have some new features that we are excited to share with you!

Chalk Walk & Street Art
Come and release your creativity at our STAR Chalk Walk. It is free to participate! Get registered at the STAR tent at Bluffton Rd. and Interlaken the day of the event. Chalk will be provided, but feel to bring your own supplies, as well. 9’ by 5’ square art spaces will be available on a first come, first serve basis all along Bluffton Rd in front of STAR Bank. Popular vote winners for both adults and children will win a prize basket. Also, anybody who comes to appreciate the art and votes for their favorite square in each category will be entered to win a prize basket.

Bike Decorating & Bike Parade
If you ride your bike to A Walk In Waynedale, be sure to stop at Hair Affair’s parking lot, where they will offer everything you need to decorate your bike for the day! And meet back up at Hair Affair for the Bike Parade which will start at 3pm; so get there early to secure your spot in the parade!

Passport Stamps For Prizes
Pickup your “Passport To Waynedale” at either of the information booths throughout the event, located near Flagstar Bank and STAR Bank. Participate in select activities and visit vendors who have a Passport stamp. The more boxes on the Passport you have stamped, the bigger prize you might win! Be sure to turn in your stamped Passport at the end of the event to qualify to win.

Live, Local Music
Bring your blankets, grab your folding chairs, charge your cameras and get your dancing feet ready! This year, for your listening pleasure, you will be serenaded by the wonderful music of The Adam Strack Band! The cover band performs a variety of styles including classic rock, alternative rock, reggae, country, and bluegrass. Adam comes from a family of musicians that played as a family band for a decade in the 90’s and has been performing in front of live audiences for over 25 years.

Science Exploration Tent
We are pleased to once again present our Science Exploration Tent! A place where discoveries can be made! Kids and adults will have a chance to learn about the wetlands with Little River Wetlands, explore the honey bees through a live observation hive with Southwest Honey Co., learn about raptors like hawks and eagles with Soarin’ Hawk Raptor Rehabilitation, learn about pets and animal safety with H.O.P.E. for Animals and get cozy with live critters from the Critter Crew. We hope this new feature will satisfy all the adventurers at heart, while at the same time providing our community the opportunity for some outdoor science education.

Local Vendors
Don’t forget to check out the vendors all along Bluffton Road! Over 40 local companies and organizations will be represented the day of A Walk In Waynedale. This is a wonderful opportunity to get to know those businesses that surround the place where you live, work and play. Many businesses are eager to meet you and share what they are doing in and around the Waynedale Community.

Don’t Forget To Be Safe!
Be sure to drive safely around the event while trying to find a parking spot or when leaving the event. There will be many walkers and bikers sharing the area on this day of community fun and togetherness. And don’t forget to bring water and keep hydrated, especially with these temperatures!

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As this is the first year that A Walk In Waynedale will be redirecting traffic and working to get guests to and from the event, the organizing committee asks for you to take caution and be patient, if you are out driving in the area during the event time. There will be many more pedestrians using the sidewalks and trails, crossing intersections, and traveling across entrances to businesses than normal. They simply ask that you take it easy and expect delays in parking and traveling times.

During the event, normal Bluffton Road traffic will be redirected to Old Trail Road with the help of police officers. There will be detour signs for drivers to follow to easily navigate around the event.

Shuttles will be dropping off and picking up guests near Star Bank, on the South side of the event on Bluffton Road. These shuttles will be serving the parking lots of St. Therese Catholic Church and Davita Dialysis Center (former BMV) throughout the event. There will also be limited parking at The Southwest Conservation Club and in Star Bank’s commercial lot (no shuttle service from these lots). However, no event parking will be allowed in the lots of businesses that surround the event, as they are reserved for patrons of their business only.

If you can bike or walk to the event, the A Walk In Waynedale committee strongly encourages you to do so! This event is about enjoying all of the great things in our community, which includes living a healthy lifestyle and using our community’s new sidewalks and trails.

The Waynedale News Staff
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